Zarif: Holocaust doesn't justify taking Palestinian lands
Speaking in a CBS interview, Iran's FM acknowledges Holocaust; however, says it can't be used as an excuse for an 'apartheid policy in Palestine,' adds US President Trump is acting like a bully while threatening European countries to halt business with the Islamic Republic.
In an interview with CBS, Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif acknowledged the Holocaust, but said it does not justify the establishment of the State of Israel on Palestinian lands.
When asked by journalist John Dickerson what Iranian President Hassan Rouhani meant by saying at the United Nations General Assembly that US President Donald Trump's conduct resembles to that of the Nazi regime, Zarif replied, "Iran has stated very clearly, we reject the killing of innocent people no matter what the numbers, no matter by whom."
"For a Holocaust denying country that is threatening Israel to compare the United States or its leader to Nazis is among the most outrageous things I have ever heard," the journalist opined.
Zarif acknowledged that the Holocaust during which six million Jews were murdered clearly happened.
"A huge number of innocent people died. But, it does not justify depriving others of their homeland. it does not justify building settlements in the territory of other people. It does not justify violating the rights of Palestinians. The Holocaust cannot be used as a justification for an apartheid policy in Palestine," Iran's foreign minister exclaimed.
The Iranian diplomat also stated Trump's threats against European countries that refuses to impose economic sanctions on Iran are "unprecedented."
"The United States is asking countries to violate international law. And is telling countries and companies that if they observe the law they would be punished. This is probably unprecedented," he went on to say.
Zarif described Trump's conduct as bullying, and added Iran might renew its nuclear program.
"The US is threatening those European countries and saying if you continue to do business with Iran you won't be able to do business with the United States. Can they sustain a relationship with Iran under that kind of pressure from the United States?" Zarif wondered.
"Certainly some European companies have withdrawn from Iran because of the fear of punishment by the United States." However, "We will continue to work with the Europeans," he asserted.
Zarif added that the fact Trump targeted Iran repeatedly in his remarks to the UN General Assembly, "is not a sign of strength."
"He's making all those statements. He convened a meeting of the Security Council to bash Iran, and at the end of the day 14 out of 15 members of the Security Council bashed his decision to walk away from JCPOA. So unfortunately the United States has managed to isolate itself in the world," he went on to say.
Zarif insisted that Iran has kept the 2015 nuclear accord, and ceased developing its nuclear reactors, adding that since Trump has withdrawn from the deal, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) monitoring it, has reported twice Teheran is honoring the pact.